A Novel Continuous Production Method for Rugged GRIN Plastic Optical Fiber
Department of Defense
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
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Small Business Information
3014 N.E. 21st Way, Gainesville, FL, 32609
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
AbstractThis proposal is to demonstrate the feasibility of a continuous process of producing rugged, low moisture content, high bandwidth, gradient index plastic optical fiber. This type of fiber is expected to have great utility in high speed local area networks. Existing Japanese production methods result in bandwidths which are three to ten times less than theoretically possible, and the bandwidth of the fiber is not stable and reproducible. The production rate is intrinsically limited by the batch nature of the process and, or, multi-step procedure. In the USA, the High-Speed Plastic Network (HSPN) consortium was formed in 1994, and is supported by a $5M DARPA grant. A member of that team has licensed one of the Japanese batch technologies to fabricate the above type of fiber. The present proposal is to develop a novel, low cost, continuous production process for the fiber. The fiber will have a stable bandwidth of > 2 GHz.km, be stable from -40+ C to +150+ C, have low moisture uptake, attenuation of less than 150 dB/kilometer and be stable to radiation exposure up to 10(3) Rad.
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